Who do you say that I am?
Jesus went on with his disciples to the villages of Caesarea Philippi; and on the way he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that I am?” And they answered him, “John the Baptist; and others, Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets.” He asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered him, “You are the Messiah.” And he sternly ordered them not to tell anyone about him.
Then he began to teach them that the Son of Man must undergo great suffering, and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again. He said all this quite openly. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. But turning and looking at his disciples, he rebuked Peter and said, “Get behind me, Satan! For you are setting your mind not on divine things but on human things.”
He called the crowd with his disciples, and said to them, “If any want to become my followers, let them deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For those who want to save their life will lose it, and those who lose their life for my sake, and for the sake of the gospel, will save it. For what will it profit them to gain the whole world and forfeit their life? Indeed, what can they give in return for their life? Those who are ashamed of me and of my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, of them the Son of Man will also be ashamed when he comes in the glory of his Father with the holy angels.” ~ Mark 8:27-38
Are we all that different from Peter?
I'm sure most of us could explain on some level who Jesus is to us; why he is important to us.
But when faced with Jesus' own claims about who he is, do we question it? Do we second guess it, or even try to set Jesus straight?
Who DO we say Jesus is when he tells us he is the Messiah? Is he Jesus the wise sage? Jesus the macho crusader? Jesus the political icon? Jesus the superstar? Jesus the teacher? Jesus the best friend?
What does being Messiah mean to us?
Is it just as frightening to us as it was to Peter that for Jesus, being Messiah meant a kind of glory that is the opposite of what we see as glory: that for Jesus, true glory came on a cross, suffering so that death could finally be defeated? True glory came with sacrifice and compassion.
Who do you say that he is?
You are the great I AM. Help me to see you in truth and spirit. Amen